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Is Apple unable to dream up a killer new product because it no longer attracts young talent?

Posted: , by Luis D.

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This t-shirt's message feels eerily appropriate.

This t-shirt's message feels eerily appropriate.


Got some engineering work under your belt and eyeing a job at Apple? The Guardian has a rather acerbic article that could make you reconsider depositing that CV to One Infinite Loop, Cupertino. The media got in touch with developer James Knight, a 27-year old ex-Google coder, who described the Apple "culture" as "negative, strict, and harsh", and the work environment as "very hostile". "You're gonna be working 60-80 hours a week and some VP will come yell at you at any moment." - said Knight.

"Several" Silicon Valley recruiters seem to share the coder's sentiment in what's explained as a trend that has been blooming slowly for years and has now manifested amidst the latest tech boom. In the past, Apple was revered in the Bay area tech circles, as career-minded specialists were careful not to tarnish any possibility of landing a job at One Infinite Loop. But right now, the mood appears to be shifting towards dismissing the very same opportunity as dodging a bullet. Programmers in the job market openly talk of issues such as "high-stress culture" and "cult of secrecy", which goes against office tendencies of gentler management and "playful" workdays.

Young talent isn't as keen on talking with Apple recruiters.

Young talent isn't as keen on talking with Apple recruiters.

Moreover, Apple still doesn't serve free food or offer much in the way of benefits, which is notorious at the very least, and downright shocking for the kind of high-prized, perk-accustomed engineering talent that the company wants to attract. Thus, recruiters claim that Apple is no longer attractive for "top young talent", which now eyes the likes of Facebook, Alphabet, Uber and Airbnb. Ambitious programmers and designers, the kind of employees who sign a contract to dream up the next big thing, are put off by what seems like a "confusing and rigid culture" bearing "a lot of secrecy, a lot of control".

Also, engineers no longer look "to work for Apple", but rather towards "big problems" on the cutting edge of technology, ones that will challenge them creatively and put them at the center. And even though Apple is tackling self-driving car and artificial intelligence projects, it hasn't produced a truly novel product in a while. Its last major release, the Apple Watch, did not become a "must-have" among users, even though it is the best-selling smartwatch right now. Meanwhile, iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks are no longer considered groundbreaking products, just ones undergoing refinement.

Although Apple is the world's largest corporation, more stable than venture-backed companies like Uber and Airbnb, and pays its employees well, it may have to consider relaxing the reins in addition to brainstorming a killer new product. But the latter can't happen without fresh-minded talent, and at present, the iPhone maker seems to be off the radars of disruptive programmers who value flexibility and lifestyle perks over security and a big salary.

Then again, The Guardian's report is only indicative of a trend. For all these recruiters who claim Apple has lost its appeal, there could be just as many claiming the opposite. For all the young coders who'd rather get a job at Uber, there might be just as many who'd give anything to work on the new iPhone. But where there's smoke, there's surely fire. Meanwhile, Apple hasn't reflected upon the publication.

source: The Guardian

Is Apple unable to dream up a killer new product because it no longer attracts young talent?

60 Comments
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posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:29 3

1. TheStanleyFTW (Posts: 248; Member since: 20 Feb 2013)


Yes. :)

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 20:24 1

48. engineer-1701d (unregistered)


ha let some f**ker yell in my face as he stated and watch the vps face hit the ground and my foot break his jew.

posted on 02 Feb 2016, 03:02 1

58. JumpinJackROMFlash (Posts: 450; Member since: 10 Dec 2014)


You're probably right about him being a jew. The probability is high.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:35 6

2. SkyfallWalker (Posts: 73; Member since: 28 Jan 2016)


Is it too much for Apple to make iTunes available for Android?

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:44 1

4. xocomaox (Posts: 151; Member since: 14 Dec 2015)


Yes .

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:50 4

9. Wiencon (Posts: 1920; Member since: 06 Aug 2014)


Apple's management is too proud of itself, they will never change

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:54 6

10. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 1484; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)


Apple is not Microsoft nor in the same state(in smartphone of course) lol. Apple is all about me.. me.. me...!!! They make money from selling hardware unlike google who make money through their services(ads:P).. Apple made theirown echo system tied strictly with their hardware. They provide a unique very closed experience. And they don't give a damn abt outsiders:P
"If you don't have iTunes, uhh.. then you don't have am iPhone.. :P"

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 09:23 1

22. Norris (Posts: 121; Member since: 26 Jun 2015)


Why are you so hateful toward other companies?, and praise apple like there's nothing else..

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 10:08

30. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 1484; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)


Me? I don't hate any companies.. And I never used any Apple product more than 3 months lol.. Those were extremely closed for me which is not my cup of tea...

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 15:26

43. TechieXP1969 (Posts: 10645; Member since: 25 Sep 2013)


I was using iTunes before I ever bought an iOS based device. I thought it was the best music management app I had seen.

It allowed be to edit the tags and add mu own album art (which other apps can too). It's only downside is it is connected to Apple's servers for content and listing available media and it makes the application slow.

It is the worse malware ever, but I still use it.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 20:28

50. engineer-1701d (unregistered)


i had itunes in 2001 or 2 i loved it but it kept crashing my computer so got pissed and battery kept going bad so anyways i still have it somewhere hahaha.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 09:27 5

23. tedkord (Posts: 12207; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


Oh God, no. I hate iTunes. It's gummed up both PCs I installed it on. Granted, that was quite a few years ago, and it might have gotten better, but no way I'm installing it on my phone.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 20:24 1

49. engineer-1701d (unregistered)


hahahaha thats the only thing stopping masses of people like 60% leaving and going to android or some other. the itunes is on apple.

posted on 02 Feb 2016, 03:03

59. JumpinJackROMFlash (Posts: 450; Member since: 10 Dec 2014)


Why the f*** would you want that crap on Android?

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:37 1

3. Sidewinder (Posts: 434; Member since: 15 Jan 2015)


Hmm.. Well the iPhone was their trump product. But I don't think the iPhone can keep sustaining their revenue. The competition is pretty neck and neck. So unless they try a different approach than just polishing existing features, their future as a sustainable business company is unsure.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:45

5. joey_sfb (Posts: 5991; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)


Well written article.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:47

7. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 1484; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)


Agreed!

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:47 1

6. LetsBeHonest (Posts: 1484; Member since: 04 Jun 2013)


Well its true Apple hasn't dome something truly innovative since a long time. They are kind buy companies with tech and implement it in theirs and name it that they made it. All those tech sites biased towards Apple will claims it as the best and give Apple tons of credits where no name about the originals who made the tech will get mentioned in their articles anywhere.
But Apple surely are the trend setter among developers and OEMs and that gives meaning to Apple's existence more than enough. IPhones are great just like it's competitors but not as great as some (biased) tech journalist exaggerating it to.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 13:35 1

38. Finalflash (Posts: 3206; Member since: 23 Jul 2013)


Problem is that they have actively entrenched their old and dying leadership after jobs died. They sacked Forestall asap and he was the only young exec they had. Ive no longer designs anything decent since Jobs died either. The iPhone 6 looks like crap and the Apple watch is even worse. The battery case is just laughable along with their Pro series trashcan shaped macs and the new MacBook looks like nothing special. They can't come up with something new to save their lives and if they do, they are all set to mess it up.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 14:18

41. marorun (Posts: 3911; Member since: 30 Mar 2015)


Yep So instead they pay ton in marketing and make tech journalist sell the iphone for them.

You know if someone tell you something is the best eventually most ppl will fall for it.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:48 3

8. DRS1977 (Posts: 431; Member since: 27 May 2015)


Apple is a Walmart brand. Anyone can buy an Apple product and just like almost anyone can buy a Toyota Corolla. They are not special or exclusive.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 09:28

24. tedkord (Posts: 12207; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


What's that got to do with the article?

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 16:14 2

46. sgodsell (Posts: 3885; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)


Walmart has reasonable prices for everyone. Apple is overpriced in all of their products.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:57 2

11. lyndon420 (Posts: 4555; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)


World's best selling smartwatch? Sales numbers would be nice otherwise I call BS.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 09:01

19. Tizo101 (Posts: 409; Member since: 05 Jun 2015)


it's only a wonder where he got the numbers from... coz they haven't been released

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 09:29

25. tedkord (Posts: 12207; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)


I'm sure it is the best individual selling model. But probably not by much, which is why they aren't announcing numbers.

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 10:21

32. ibend (Posts: 5078; Member since: 30 Sep 2014)


Its just common sense among sheeps, lol

posted on 30 Jan 2016, 08:35

53. j2001m (Posts: 2976; Member since: 28 Apr 2014)


It's only China that keep the numbers up

posted on 29 Jan 2016, 07:59

12. Arch_Fiend (Posts: 2709; Member since: 03 Oct 2015)


Apple better get there s**t together.

posted on 30 Jan 2016, 08:38 1

54. j2001m (Posts: 2976; Member since: 28 Apr 2014)


Not going to happen, look what they offered with the pro iPad and said you can now give up your pic, Hahahahahahhahahahahahahah
The best part is many Apple sites like the Verge lost all credibility when they reviewed it and then when you then put there surface reviews next to it, what a joke

It just shows all there iPhone review are crap one way reviews

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